A retired Vegas Showgirl walks into a bar…….

The Importance of Restaurant Refrigeration

The day did not start like any other.  Something just seemed off… most likely because something was off but I couldn’t put a finger on it. Nothing remarkable or out of the ordinary happened.  My football team lost but that is certainly not out of the ordinary.
I couldn’t sleep the night before, and then when I did, I slept in a little too long.  I struggled to form a complete sentence though I really had nothing to say.  The coffee was watery.
There was no reason to call-in ill. 
No reason to call-in-‘mentally’ ill. 
I did have an intense urge to call-in-‘drunk’ when my football team started losing.
Unfortunately I wasn’t drinking. 
“I don’t think I can do this today,” I heard myself mumble as my car door slammed shut in the parking lot.  I had two minutes to cross the parking lot and clock in.  I wasn’t late, but I was cutting it close and my stomach churned even more.  I had no one to blame for my poor timing but my feet.  They swelled with cement the moment the clock struck ‘get ready for work’. 
With heavy feet, a knotted stomach, a distracted brain and missing vocabulary, I pushed through the doors of the brewhouse.
And then it happened.  It wasn’t long into my shift at all.  A stupid, rude comment from a woman.  Maybe she didn’t really mean it.  Maybe she didn’t realize she said anything wrong.  She might have been making a tactless joke. Or taking her bad day out on me because her husband is unemployed and I am not.  Or maybe he is having and affair with a woman who has my hair color.  Regardless, I had a small fistful of straws walking into work and this woman just plucked several from the few I had left.  My only defense was waiting for me in the dish pit.  It was rolling rack of scalding clean glasses that needed to become frosty cold mugs.  I grabbed them before anyone could see my face start to crack and I pushed them into the walk in freezer.
The walk in is dark and blue.  The humming from its refrigeration system is loud enough to silence all outside noise and all inner thoughts.  Its freezing air engulfs one securely and protectively like the bed covers I did not want to crawl out from underneath just hours earlier.  Freezer air bites hot flushed cheeks and capillary ridden eyes and lessens not only the redness of the eyes but the swelling of the eyelids.  All physical evidence of “I give up, I am defeated, I can no longer do this” is blown away in the mini jet stream of artificial Arctic gusts.  Hot pulsating emotion has no chance in the still dead cold of a walk in freezer.   
I emerged numb both inside and out, which is good.  I continued my day hooked on my version of restaurant Novocaine.  And if I needed another fix, there was always ice cream to organize.

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